by Dan Senn
for solo flute
nneS naD yb
etulf olos rof
flute, was composed using the Raku
Composition Program (RCP)
developed in the early 1980s while teaching at the Canberra School of
Music in Australia. The compositional data for this piece was generated
in 1985, in
Urbana, Illinois, but the piece was not finished. In September of 2013,
I rediscovered the score data, a
traditional 5-line staff with space=time linear notation, and decided
to restart its interpretation to create the score which is given below.
Scribbled onto the margins of this data was "Its Mirror,
December 9, 1985, To my flutist
friends." This is my first solo flute piece but other more recent works
including flute are "Close,
Then Far" (2010), and Cartwheels
Mirror, the title, refers to the impact of one's will on
raw material when
making art—a work of art is a reflection of the artist's will in these
base materials. But, off course, this is never exactly true as all
"raw" materials are
biased in myriad ways and, therefore, will is utterly obscured like
images in amusement park mirrors. Even so, the RCP
was written to deal consciously and directly with this issue by
creating its own tonal geography from which a musical score is shaped.
An analogy to this would be in the problems facing a civil engineer who
must cut an elegant road between two points on a map separated by
desert, mountains, valleys, and forests. The composer, here, is the
incorporates a liberal use of the common fermata to not only designate
held notes and rests but actual rhythms in a line. In measure 117, for
example, notes of equal value are interupted by fermatas changing the
rhythm of the phrase. The best way to learn the desired rhythm is to
listen to the Sibelius generated mp3 file given below. And while the
piece may be interpreted broadly for performance, this Sibelius
generated version should be treated as an adjunct to the visual score
and especially used early on for learning the piece.
Full pdf versions of the score can be obtained from the composer.
Play score with sound via YouTube.